Tigers trade for Alexi Casilla to boost minors depth

Chris McCosky
The Detroit News
Alexi Casilla

Detroit – Last week, when Tigers assistant general manager Al Avila was asked about Triple-A shortstop Dixon Machado getting some playing time at third base, he said it was something the organization had been wanting to do for some time.

"The problem is," he said, "we don't really have anybody else to play at shortstop."

That problem, apparently, has been rectified.

The Tigers on Monday acquired infielder Alexi Casilla, 31 next month, in a trade with Tampa for cash considerations.

Casilla, who was hitting .315 at Triple-A Durham and being used mostly as a designated hitter, was expected to start at second base for the Mud Hens Monday.

The name is probably familiar to Tigers fans. He spent seven seasons with the Twins and delivered the game-winning hit in Game 163 in 2009, sending the Twins to the postseason.

Used mostly as a second baseman and shortstop, he posted a .247 career average (.302 on-base, .633 OPS) in nine Major League seasons. He spent part of the 2013 and 2014 seasons with Baltimore.

Once well-stocked with middle infielders, recent trades – Eugenio Suarez, Devon Travis, Domingo Leyba and Willy Adames – and losing Hernan Perez off waivers to Milwaukee have left them short-handed.

Barring injury, there are no immediate plans to bring Casilla to Detroit.

Twitter @cmccosky